Navigation Links
U of Maryland study: Partnership may help address cancer, health disparities

BALTIMORE, MARYLAND, January 29, 2014 Robust partnerships between rural community health education centers and academic health care institutions can make substantial strides toward addressing race-, income- and geographically-based health disparities in underserved communities by empowering both the community and leading University institutions, according to newly published research from the University of Maryland School of Medicine.

University of Maryland Medical Researcher Claudia R. Baquet, MD, MPH, and her team examined 17 years of a partnership between the University of Maryland School of Medicine and a rural health education non-profit on Maryland's Eastern Shore, the Eastern Shore Area Health Education Center (ESAHEC). The research team found that rural communities were more willing to participate in clinical trials and biospecimen donations when long-term partnerships were established between University Medical Centers in cooperation with local community health educational centers. The paper was published in the most recent issue of Progress in Community Health Partnerships: Research, Education and Action, a journal published by Johns Hopkins University Press.

"Maryland's Eastern Shore has a rich history of ethnic, racial and cultural diversity in their communities," says Dr. Baquet, professor and associate dean for policy and planning and director of the Center for Health Disparities at the University of Maryland School of Medicine. "The Eastern Shore represents populations with unique health disparities that are amenable to targeted interventions, " she says.

But like many rural regions in the state, the Eastern shore has unique needs when it comes to health care.

"Its residents have higher rates of cancer and chronic disease than those who live in urban areas," she says. Furthermore, the area lacks public transportation systems to take patients to and from health care. It also has a growing number of older residents who are Medicare-eligible yet are not aware of the services available to them."

The researchers, who formed this partnership, envision that the partnership will become a model for other programs throughout the country, fostering community-engaged research, particularly among rural communities. The partnership between the ESAHEC and the School of Medicine is funded by grants from the National Cancer Institute's (NCI) Center to Reduce Cancer Health Disparities (CRCHD) and the NIH National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities (NIMHD).

"Dr. Baquet's research is representative of the kind of study the NCI Center to Reduce Cancer Health Disparities has been promoting since the Center's inception over a decade ago," says Sanya A. Springfield, PhD, CRCHD's director.

"It's gratifying to see Dr. Baquet's research reflect how a model of mutual respect and trust can lead to community empowerment, a refocus on healthy lifestyle behaviors, and increased willingness to participate in clinical trials and biospecimen donation among our underserved communities. These are all essential components to building greater capacity, eliminating disparities, and advancing the science of cancer health disparities.," Dr. Springfield said.

The researchers describe the relationship between the School of Medicine's Office of Policy and Planning and the ESAHEC, a nonprofit funded by the Health Resources Services Administration and the Maryland health department. The goal of the ESAHEC is to use educational partnerships to help address shortages in primary care and specialty health professionals in the nine rural counties that make up the Eastern Shore of Maryland.

"This ongoing research partnership with the ESAHEC is special in its truly bi-directional nature, in which both partners participate fully in the research process and each benefits from the other's expertise," says Dr. Baquet.

ESAHEC's educational programs include a Bioethics Mini-Medical School for the public and other research and health-topic training for the rural community, as well as continuing education for established health care professionals and a health career education track for children from Grade 8 through Grade 12.

The Eastern Shore ESAHEC is one of three partnerships in Maryland and 255 in the nation.

Outreach that educates the community and community health professionals about health care and research is core to the issue of improving health care outcomes, increasing access and addressing health disparities, says Baquet.

Increasing public trust in research is another major benefit of the program. Examples of types of research jointly conducted by the partners includes: research on barriers to clinical trial participation, strategies to address biospecimen donation for future research purposes, telehealth training, bioethics barriers to research participation, patient navigation to cancer screening for rural and urban communities.

"We are hoping that our outreach will encourage greater community trust in academic researchers and greater participation in research, allowing academics to better understand and address the issues facing rural communities," Baquet says. "In turn, we hope that academic health center faculty will become more culturally competent, responsive to community needs and expertise and will learn to include community organizations as meaningful partners in their research. This model has a higher potential for sustainability than the approach that we call 'helicopter research,' where academics conduct studies but do not share their results or return any benefit to the community."

"We do have a truly bidirectional partnership," says Jeanne Bromwell, co-author of the article and deputy director and continuing education coordinator at the ESAHEC. "Dr. Baquet respects our role in the community and we very much respect her knowledge and contacts through the School of Medicine. People here often look at academics as outsiders. With our contacts down here, we are able to bring Dr. Baquet's expertise to the community in a way that does not make them feel threatened. It is a phenomenal relationship."

The research results are used to develop new programs to educate community members about bioethics and the benefits of clinical research, easing their concerns and suspicions about such studies. Community members have participated in research examining the use of community health workers as patient navigators for cancer screening for African-American patients. They also participated in research that found that telehome care patient monitoring of home health patients with certain chronic diseases improves outcomes. The partnership with the medical school also has provided the ESAHEC access to critical funding for which it would not otherwise be eligible.

The program continues to form bonds between the School of Medicine and its students and the residents and health professionals on the Eastern Shore, in keeping with the School's mission, says E. Albert Reece, MD, PhD, MBA, vice president for medical affairs of the University of Maryland and John Z. and Akiko K. Bowers Distinguished Professor and dean of the School of Medicine. "The School of Medicine's mission reaches well beyond Baltimore, throughout the state of Maryland, the nation and, indeed, the world," says Dr. Reece. "We hope that our incredibly valuable partnership with our colleagues on the Eastern Shore will serve as a model for other academic medical institutions across the country, creating a new future for the health of America's rural residents."


Contact: Christopher Hardwick
University of Maryland Medical Center

Related medicine news :

1. Annapolis, Maryland Chocoholic, Adam Green, Advocates Xocai's "Change Your Chocolate" Success to Demand for Raw Blueberry in Yokohama Japan and Kaohsiung Taiwan
2. Metro Maryland Ostomy Association, Inc. Is Pleased to Announce the Launch of Its New Flagship Project, "IT GUTS BETTER" in Concert with Our 40th Anniversary Celebration
3. Bilateral Biomet Hip Implants Cause Maryland Man Severe Pain, Elevated Metal Ion Levels, and Revision Surgeries, Alleges Lawsuit Filed by Parker Waichman LLP
4. Chad Egresi Named New Director of Graduate Admissions for Maryland University of Integrative Health
5. ConceiveAbilities Expands Its Surrogacy Program to Include Florida, Ohio, Maryland, and More
6. SC&H Capital Transaction with Southern Maryland Hospital Center Wins ACG Maryland’s Deal of the Year for “Services and Other” Category
7. America’s Health Insurance Announces Certification from the Maryland Health Connection Marketplace to Assist Consumers in Enrolling and Purchasing Health Insurance
8. The Cochran Firm, D.C. Announces $1.026 Million Verdict on the Eastern Shore of Maryland in Personal Injury Lawsuit
9. Integrative Nutrition Announces New Partnership with Maryland University of Integrative Health
10. Appliance Repair Annapolis "Best of the Best" Awarded to Mr. Appliance of Central Maryland for Excellence by Follow Media Consulting, Inc.
11. Ecotourism Resort in Maryland Selects Tulikivi Fireplaces
Post Your Comments:
(Date:11/27/2015)... ... November 27, 2015 , ... ... Microsoft Dynamics SL User Group (MSDSLUG). Recognized as Microsoft’s official group for end ... Microsoft Dynamics SL software users, partners, industry experts and representatives. Intellitec Solutions’ membership ...
(Date:11/27/2015)... ... November 27, 2015 , ... The moment you ... for not only fulfilling the needs of advisers and clients but going above ... and providing top-tier customer service. However, there's always room for improvement, which is ...
(Date:11/27/2015)... ... , ... CBD College is proud to announce that on November ... to its Diagnostic Medical Sonography program. CBD College is honored to join this very ... and universities in the state of California make the cut. CBD College is officially ...
(Date:11/27/2015)... ... , ... Dr. Thomas Dunlap and Dr. Patrick Coleman , ... Emergency Medicine at St., Joseph Health System’s Santa Rosa Memorial Hospital , co-hosted ... similar ways and require time-critical intervention to avoid large area heart damage and progressive ...
(Date:11/27/2015)... ... 27, 2015 , ... Indosoft Inc., developer and distributor of ... 11 LTS (Long Term Support) into its Q-Suite 5.10 product line. , Making ... with a version of Asterisk that will receive not only security fixes, but ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:11/27/2015)... YORK , November 27, 2015 ... system is set to go online. The potential to ... processes is vast and far from fully exploited as ... to patient health records, either via mobile tablet or ... ) --> ) --> ...
(Date:11/27/2015)... ) ... "2016 Global Tumor Marker Testing Market: Supplier ... Segment Forecasts, Innovative Technologies, Instrumentation Review, Competitive ... offering. --> ) has ... Global Tumor Marker Testing Market: Supplier Shares ...
(Date:11/26/2015)... Netherlands , November 26, 2015 ... A new combination approach blends immunotherapy with Bremachlorin-photodynamic ... A new combination approach blends immunotherapy with Bremachlorin-photodynamic therapy ... A new combination approach blends immunotherapy with Bremachlorin-photodynamic therapy ... Netherlands has found that immunotherapy can be ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: